Although it is 150 years since the publication of Charles Darwin's ‘The Origin of Species’, speciation remains a key question in evolutionary biology. In fact, thanks to conceptual advances made possible by the integration of new methods and approaches, speciation research might be considered more topical than ever before. In particular, the possibility to study genetic differentiation on a genomic level has opened up new avenues for understanding the genetic basis of reproductive isolation.
To demark the anniversary of both the birth of Charles Darwin and the publication of Origin of Species, the Wenner-Gren Foundations and The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences organized a symposium entitled ‘The Origin of Species—150 years later’ in June 2009, at the beautiful Swedish west-coast village Fiskebäckskil. The symposium was attended by 60 invited guests, representing a mix of internationally leading scientists in the field of speciation research and post-graduate students and post-docs from, mostly, Swedish universities. The chapters of this volume are written by speakers at this symposium.
I am grateful to the support and enthusiasm provided by the co-organizer of the meeting Professor Staffan Ulfstrand and to Professor Mike Thorndyke at the Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences for hosting us. I am indebted to Maria Helgöstam at the Wenner-Gren Foundations for excellent administrative and organizational support and to Professor Bertil Daneholt, Science Secretary at the Wenner-Gren Foundations, for encouragement and continuous support. Finally, all participants of the symposium contributed to most stimulating discussions.
One contribution of 11 to a Theme Issue ‘Genomics of speciation’.
- © 2010 The Royal Society